ROANOKE, Va, – Inside a huge drafty warehouse in Roanoke, crews put the finishing touches on an RV turned mobile COVID-19 unit.
A small, Roanoke-based company, Industrial Process Technologies converted the brand new, full-sized mobile home into a vehicle capable of handling the distribution of COVID vaccines as well as training exercises and other needs related to the current pandemic.
“We had to remove the entire back third bedroom, in order to make room for the lab. So everything was removed and then also the entire electrical system was upgraded to a central computer system that actually monitors the entire bus environment,” said Chris Boylan, project manager for Industrial Process Technologies.
Boylan explained that the RV’s walls needed to be removed in order to install the improved wiring, monitoring systems and deep freezers required to handle the current Pfizer and Moderna vaccines.
He says the bus is now equipped with special air filters that keep the air clean to prevent the spread of viruses.
The walls and countertops have also been replaced to make cleaning and sanitizing easier and more effective.
“So, we started with polypropylene walls lining the entire back lab section… and then also used medical-grade countertops and also have lab faucets and wash stations,” Boylan said.
Boylan’s team was finishing up the interior of the project before sending the vehicle to Lynchburg, where it will be wrapped in the colors of Hampton University.
The bus will be delivered to Hampton in about a week where they will begin using it to fight the virus in underserved areas.
Boylan says he is happy to have played a small role in the fight against the virus.
“To be involved in something like this to help out the community. It’s really cool. To see something that was built from nothing… and now we’re doing this bus for COVID-19 which is very exciting for our company,” Boylan said.